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Old 09-12-2006, 09:42 AM   #16
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The Renaissance-era intellectuals and thinkers defined human beings in a different light. Instead of turning his back to the world and despising material life as the primordial human being had done, the newly defined man was an individual who turned to the world and material life. Thus, the human being became the subject of a new religion.

In its turn, worldly life embraced this new creature. The mutual acceptance and admiration of man and the world by each other is the most remarkable peculiarity of the Renaissance legacy. In its essence, this extraordinary religious event started with the purpose of reforming religion, rather than opposing it or pushing it to the background. Yet in its historical development, this process deviated from its original objectives.

Man’s success in controlling the world did not stop there. Rather, it turned into aggression and domination that extended beyond the world of nature and to human societies as well. The development that came to be known as colonialism, and was the natural outcome of the domination of modern science over nature, was extended to human sciences as well. The extreme reaction against the absolute domination of the church over man in the Middle Ages, and the denial of his fundamental rights and freedoms, led to another extreme reaction in the form of an encounter between faith and reason in modern times. In the new environment that was created instrumental rationality confronted faith. As a result, man showed utmost effort to dominate not only nature; but also once this was accomplished, the strong established dominance over weak societies. After the establishment of what we know as Western Civilization, we witnessed the emergence of a belief in both the dominance of that civilization and in the integration of other civilizations or the remnants of other civilizations into a unified Western one.

The West, being the greatest victim of over- reliance on reason, is seeking the help of intellectuals and philosophers to deprive reason of every credit and privilege that was once bestowed upon it.
http://www.cathedral.org/cathedral/programs/lecture060907.shtml

I take pride in this over-reliance of reason; so should any progressive minded individual.
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Old 09-12-2006, 07:27 PM   #17
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Originally posted by A_Wanderer
I take pride in this over-reliance of reason; so should any progressive minded individual.
I agree, but this is a larger trend that goes beyond Khatami and Islam, as a whole.

Postmodern theory calls itself the "end of philosophy," but, like most postmodern theory, it's another semantical game. What's also present in postmodernism is the idea that, in its demise, will be a short-term return to modernism, culminating in the long-term demise of all the philosophy of the 20th century, eventually reverting back to 19th century romanticism and realism.

It's been my view that postmodernism, as a whole, was killed on 9/11, and watching the political climate since then, I believe it is more true than ever. We're clearly in a return modernist climate (the whole "War on Terror" is saturated with modernist futurism), but I'm even starting to wonder if the end of modernism is slowly creeping from the horizon. I'm bothered, lately, by these ideas that reason and science should be "redefined" to make it convenient for religious beliefs. But then it's no longer reason or science; it's religion. The people of the Middle Ages were generally well-intentioned, and they did the best with what knowledge they had, but for the people of today to willfully go back to the Middle Ages shows their ignorance.

Seeing the kind of stupidity in this world today makes me feel a slight sense of dread for the future.

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Old 09-12-2006, 08:02 PM   #18
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The trend goes beyond Khatami; but he is no raving jihadist, the argument against rationalism is nuanced and framed in a way that is agreeable to people who would otherwise not be believers, that is what makes it much more interesting.
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Old 09-12-2006, 08:37 PM   #19
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The trend goes beyond Khatami; but he is no raving jihadist, the argument against rationalism is nuanced and framed in a way that is agreeable to people who would otherwise not be believers, that is what makes it much more interesting.
Of course it does. You can find many American conservatives who can write many "nuanced" arguments against rationalism, as well.

That's what makes it so frightening. It's everywhere.

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